Apollo Real Estate Advisors, the US private equity real estate firm, has closed its first international real estate fund on $335m, securing commitments from US, European, Israeli and Australian financial and public institutions.
Apollo International Real Estate Fund, which is already one third invested, is looking to create a diversified portfolio of real estate assets in Western Europe, Central Europe and Japan. $15m of the fund’s capital has been committed by Apollo Capital, the managing general partner.
Apollo has been investing in Europe since 1995 and to date has completed 58 international transactions amounting to over E6bn worth of real estate assets and E775m of equity. Recent transactions include the acquisition last December of Warsaw’s tallest office building, the Warsaw Trade Tower, in partnership with local property investor RIDA in a deal thought to be worth more than $100m. The firm has also completed recent deals in the UK, the Netherlands, Spain and Germany, where the firm linked up with REIT Asset Management to acquire seven mixed-use properties in prime, locations across Germany.
“We began investing in Europe in 1995,” said Lee Neibart, a senior partner at Apollo. “Prior to the final closing of the International Fund, we had invested more than $700m in over 55 separate transactions, alongside a network of highly competent local operating partners and the returns have been among the most rewarding and consistent of all of our investments.”
Neibart believes the firm’s focus will remain on Europe for the next few years. “When Apollo looked at the US market for opportunity funds in 2001, we concluded that the current environment would offer very few appropriate new investments for the next 24 to 36 months. We have continued to identify attractive properties in Europe and to a smaller extent in Japan.”
“Apollo has become part of the local landscape in the major cities in Europe,” said William Benjamin, who heads the firm’s team of ten professionals in London said Benjamin. “We are very pleased to have attracted several new international investors to subscribe alongside our repeat US clients.”